First DLG Crash - RC Groups
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Feb 14, 2009, 06:29 AM
Registered User

First DLG Crash

OK We're sitting on a beautiful winter January afternoon, blue sky all around and almost zero wind, temp just above freezing in a nice big field with a new born Mini Fire Works DLG. I have been guiding sailplanes for about 30 years on and off, so plenty experience and plenty crashes in my bag, but this was unbelievable. A new plane and a new way of launching for me. First check the plane then the controls. Everything perfect. A gentle hand toss. Very long and flat glide and hands off at that even for the landing! I was very impressed. Hard hand toss. The plane zoomed up to about 30 feet and I circled around a few times and landed. Nice. OK now it's time to try my first ever discus launch. Having never done this sort of launch before I was very careful and thought do this first one gently with only a quarter or half turn. That I did and the plane zoomed directly straight up to about 100'!! WOW!! This works very well! Then it directly turned around in a nose dive straight for the ground while I tried every control possible to redirect the flight path with absolutely no change in anything except speed going higher. The thing went nose in the ground till the leading edge of the wing and the tail boom (carbon fiber) broke clean off after the wing. I immediately did a radio check and it came out perfect! I suspect Murphys law was at play here. Glued the thing back in place and went out flying the next day with no problems at all!!
Was it Gilbert's Law that said Murphy was an optimist??
Last edited by Douglas Tarr; Feb 14, 2009 at 07:47 AM. Reason: Was intended for posting under Reasons for Crashing
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Feb 14, 2009, 07:49 AM
HerkS's Avatar
Douglas - do you have any neighbors who fly on your same frequency? That sounds as if your transmitter signal stopped or was interfered with.

On some of the transmitters we have used here, there is a small strap that connects at the bottom of the antenna. We had sometimes cracking of these which caused the signal from the transmitter to be intermittent. The signal would go away at times and then when you test it is back. Other small problems in the transmitter could cause this.

I suggest that you examine your transmitter carefully. DLG launching can put unusual stresses on the transmitter --- as well as the human body. I have this stiff shoulder today.
Feb 14, 2009, 11:00 AM
Jim C Patrick
jcpatrick's Avatar
Somewhere between the finger-on-the-stick and the servos-move-a-surface, something broke or failed to function. Look at the transmitter like Herk suggests. Also make sure its batteries didn't get joggled and turn it off.

Same on the plane. Make sure the batteries can't come unconnected —just one can break the circuit— and make sure the the radio can't be moved or partly disconnected.

With nothing working, it must be a transmitter failure, transmission (interference) failure, or an onboard battery or radio failure.
Feb 16, 2009, 06:14 PM
HerkS's Avatar
How about these guys who start an interesting thread and then just drop it without giving a clue as to what came about?????
Feb 17, 2009, 12:55 PM
Registered User
I'm not dropping anything, just taking time to do more testing. I've checked everything, radio and plane and found no apparent problems, and I've been out on three more flying sessions on different days with absolutely no problems. Amsterdam and the region here abouts is loaded with lots of Tx waves so I think that interference was the problem. In the area with PCM Mod. I've never had any problems, but with PPM I've had several incidents and for this plane I have one of the Blue Arrow PPM Rx's so I hold that as the little rascal! But we all know that if you can't repeat a problem you will never really know the answer. Thanks for everyone's input.

Feb 17, 2009, 09:57 PM
HerkS's Avatar
Douglas, Thanks for closing the books on this one. It's good to hear the outcome. We all have these strange events, and sometimes hearing about your experience can be very helpful.

Good flying to you

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